In order to have a successful business, you need to know the real reason why your customers buy your products or services. To illustrate this, ask yourself…

Do people buy things for the same as the reasons they say they buy things? 

For example, why do people buy Starbucks? What are some of the things that Starbucks advertises and that people talk about being great about Starbucks?

People say it’s the experience, the drinks with the fancy names, and the music and the coffee beans and the ambiance. Starbucks advertises itself as a third place between work and home and a place to hang out. But only around 20% of customers really hang out inside and take advantage of the setting. Most people go through a long line and take their drinks to go. What they are really buying is sugar and caffeine even though “Come stand in a long line to get sugar and caffeine in a cup” would be a terrible marketing strategy for Starbucks.

People actually buy Starbucks because it is a consistent product that’s habit-forming and easy to put into their lifestyle. But Starbucks doesn’t advertise this. You can spend five bucks on a cup of coffee that’s going to put too many calories in your body and get you wired for the next thirty-five minutes and then crash for the rest of the day.

This demonstrates how important it is to know the true reason why customers are purchasing your products or services – not what your customers say. 

So, what do your customers actually value about your product or service?

Or, if you are hoping to design a product for them, what is their actual need? Why do customers REALLY buy from you? 

You have to know this so…

  • You can keep doing it and doing it better!
  • You don’t misallocate resources pushing the parts customers don’t care about.
  • You know if your product or service is scalable, repeatable, and reliable in the long run. If not, you need to keep adapting in the market until you find a customer type and offer that fits for all the right reasons

Look for clues in how people use your product or service. Notice what they seem to care about and what they don’t. You may think it’s all about your customer service and discover for them, they are more concerned about your creativity. This tells you that you need to make sure the work continues to be creative, even if at times you have to compromise service to get there.

Regardless of what you advertise as your key benefits, you need to find out the real reason each customer values you and do more of that. Over time this information can help you to form a solid niche and refine your marketing.

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